Grounded, the back-yard survival game that puts players into a “Honey, I Shrunk The Kids” sized world for players to explore, craft, gather, and survive in, still in its Early Access phase, released there 0.4 game patch today. The 0.4 update represents the fourth major update to the game, aside from the numerous smaller bug fixes and patches that have come along since we got our first look way back in July.
The fourth major Grounded patch features some new and exciting features that players have been asking for out of the ground-breaking multiplayer game. Obsidian’s Social Media Manager Shyla Schofield released the Grounded Developer Vlog 8 today, which coincided with the game’s featuring in the Xbox Series X launch today as part of the Xbox Series X Launch Celebration, which featured a big segment on Grounded, including an interview/discussion from Ben Brennecke, as well as demos of the updated gameplay. Shayla talks about the big update coming in 0.4 – the introduction of the Koi Pond.
Though the Grounded pond has been an ever-present fixture in the backyard, the pond has, until this patch, essentially served as more of a death-trap as well as a source of curiosity and debate on future updates more than anything else. The Koi Pond introduces a whole new underwater map to explore, with new resources to be gathered as well as new recipes/plans for gear that can be built to help with underwater exploration. It also comes with new hazards unique to the underwater world, including the introduction of apex-predator Koi fish that try to eat you, friendly tadpoles that players can use to help swim around and as we might have expected from the sadists at Obsidian – underwater swimming spiders known as “Diving Bell Spiders,” which are, terrifyingly, a real thing. In addition to new creatures to help and hurt players, players will have access to new hidden features underwater, as well as the addition of new home base build options.
Not all of the additions are underwater-based. Newly added with this update is also “The Bird”, which will drop feathers occasionally, which can be used, among other things, in the production of more accurate arrows.
Grounded’s Dev team also made an announcement with this patch, that they will be changing their update approach, with plans to release fewer big updates, like the one today, rather than numerous smaller incremental updates that have featured more recently, and that this move is a direct result of community feedback. Some of this may be tied to some stability and quality issues that some recent updates had caused, including a recent announcement update that came out for Grounded that had players losing saved games and running into other challenges. Though Grounded is still essentially in an extended Beta test with gameplay occurring during ongoing development, hiccups like this are expected to happen, it can none-the-less be frustrating for players to lose hours of hard work as they help the dev team test out and develop the games features.
Here is the full letter from the developers that came out today with the 0.4 update announcing some changes to the update structure, as well as future plans for game development:
A full list of all the 0.4 Grounded Patch notes can be found below.
GROUNDED PATCH NOTES FOR UPDATE 0.4.0
- The Pond has been revamped with new content
- New Threat: Koi Fish
- New Hostile Creature: Diving Bell Spider
- New Passive Creature: Tadpole
- New Passive Creature: Water Boatman
- New Armor: Koi Armor
- New Building: Buoyant Foundation
- New Building: Buoyant Marker
- New Material: Koi Fish Scale
- New Material: Fish Bone
- New Material: Tadpole Meat
- New Material: Water Boatman Fin
- New Material: Lilypad Wax
- New Material: Eelgrass Strand
- New Recipe: Gill Tube
- New Recipe: Bubble Helmet
- New Recipe: Fin Flops
- New Recipe: Pebblet Dagger
- New Recipe: Bone Dagger
- New Recipe: Decoy Bait
- New Recipe: Bone Trident
- New Recipe: Slime Lantern
- New Food Recipe: Cooked Tadpole Meat
- New Smoothie: Fluid Flippers
- Three New Mutations to Discover
- Three new SCA.Bs to find
- HUD Markers can be visually toggled off on your HUD on an individual basis in the Map screen.
- HDR support added with additional HDR options menu.
- Xbox and Steam game invites now supported. Added an in-game invite screen that works with cross-play.
- Added a “Fix Creature Locations” button in the Options screen so you can reset creatures in the yard back to their starting spawn point in the case too many creatures are under the level or are in weird locations.
- Mouse / Keyboard support added for Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S consoles.
- Screenshots now display on the Save / Load screen for Xbox for manual and auto-saves.
CHANGES / TUNING
- The player will now sit at the surface of water more easily when swimming.
- The player will no longer automatically jump out of water when at the edge; instead, they must press the jump control.
- The player now breathes through their face.
- Increased how much time the player can last underwater without air before dying.
- Running out of air underwater will now instantly kill you as opposed to slowly reducing your health.
- Doubling the bonus damage for all weapon-based “class” mutations.
- Doubling the effectiveness of the Juicy mutation.
- Doubling the effectiveness of the Meat Shield mutation.
- Doubling the effectiveness of the Buff Lungs mutation.
- Explosive damage can no longer be blocked.
- Reducing the rate at which Bombardier hazards deal damage.
- Bombardier shotgun spray attack now has double the windup time.
- Bows now deal a little bit more damage.
- Water Fleas will now attempt to attack.
- Poison effects now deal 50% more damage (to creatures and the player).
- Players can only attack with daggers, spears, and shovels while underwater.
- Bombardiers now have a new set of attacks to pick from.
- Fixed issue with Larva attacks so they miss less often.
- HUD Marker Icons now fade out a bit as they approach the edge of the screen to reduce noise when there are lots of Trail Markers built.
- Increased the number of key items slots shown in the Data screen so if more than 30 are collected, you can view them all.
- Added “Unset Respawn Point” to the Rest/Respawn Point screen.
- Items floating on water will eventually drift to the edge.
- Reducing the cost of all tech chip science purchases by up to 40%.
- Fixed zipline lines disappearing for clients while they are riding it or when get far enough away.
- Shovels are easier to harvest underwater.
- Placing grid buildings that are snapped to other grid buildings should be much smoother for clients, especially at higher pings.
- Other buildings can be placed on top of tables.
- Signs can now be placed on the ground in addition to walls.
- Buildings can be placed on lily pads.
- Liquid Gills smoothie now grants additional underwater breath time instead of granting water breathing.
- Liquid Gills recipe has changed.
- Significantly reduced a large hitch when completing buildings in games that have a bunch of buildings already built.
- Improved render thread performance with games that have a lot of buildings built that emit fire.
- Improved CPU performance with games that have a lot of trail markers built.
- The game will no longer lag when in an interactive range of a building piece that’s part of a large structure.
- Additional general improved rendering performance.
- Drowning now has a fade to black effect as you run out of air.
- New music added to the Upper and Lower Pond
BUG FIXES – ALL PLATFORMS
TOP COMMUNITY ISSUES
- Harvestable objects in or near bodies of water can now respawn correctly (ex. Husky weeds).
- Clients can now successfully join games with large amounts of removed foliage.
- Fixed a random crash when loading into the yard.
- Fixed a crash that could occur when kicking players from a game.
- Fixed some issues with Cloud Saves not always properly redownloading when updating/reinstalling the game.
- Fixed a random crash that could happen when loading into the yard.
- Fixed issue where clients that save or disconnect while dead are not loading back into the game correctly on join.
- Cloud saves should properly delete when you delete a save game from the Save / Load interface.
- ‘Craft’ BURG.L quests for recipes can also be completed by crafting the upgraded version of the recipe, if available.
- Clients can no longer cause hauled items to float in the air by constructing buildings while hauling certain stacks of items.
- Fixed issue where conversations would stop working in-game (including the BURG.L conversation UI showing nothing when interacting with him).
- Fixed issue where the keyboard hotkeys on the Map screen stopped working after dragging your mouse.
- Fixed a handful of low frequency crashes for clients dealing with item replication.
- Science spawn points that were patched into the game and haven’t yet been collected will now spawn correctly.
- Fixed issue where Raw Science spawns that were added in patches were not showing up for people who were loading a save from a prior patch.
- Client movement will no longer be blocked by dead bodies that were killed before the client joined.
- Analyzing Silk Rope now actually unlocks recipes instead of just displaying that it does.
- Floors can no longer be placed on top of foundations, clipping into them.
- Items and harvestables will no longer respawn while the player can see them.
- Orb Weaver Jr’s now have proper death messages.
- Fixed issues with water creatures being able to get out of the water.
- The Motion Blur setting will now be properly reapplied when restarting the game.
- Drowning now has a fade to black effect as you run out of air.
- Fixed the O2 meter overlapping the Mutation Unlocked notification.
Are you excited about this latest Grounded Patch? What do you think of the Koi Pond and the new spiders? Let’s hear your thoughts by commenting below!